Archive for the ‘Inspirational Music’ Category
New Piano Songs in 2013: Pre-release album review for Uncharted by new age pianist Kevin Bluemel.
There are a number of enjoyable aspects with being the host of a popular music blog. One noticeable feature is when I interview or write a pre-release album review about the newest music by a popular celebrity artist prior to the official album release date.
Writing about today’s top instrumental artists has in turn made this site a popular destination, however there is nothing more rewarding to me personally than when I assist a less famous, but uniquely talented artist. Regardless of whether an artist is top-ranked or not I aim to inform visitors and provide increased publicity for today’s best artists and their newest album.
Today I would like to introduce new age pianist Kevin Bluemel, who is an exceptional independent artist with a rare talent as a composing pianist. I say this with full confidence and sincerity, having spent several days sampling his 2010, self-titled debut album, and newest album with 12 songs titled Uncharted, scheduled for release next week on February 5, 2013.
The 12 new piano songs by Kevin Bluemel on Uncharted are an impressive blend of piano and electronic instrumentals. Eight years in the making, you can tell these songs are skillfully composed, produced and performed just like songs from his debut album, Eye of the Storm, Heart of the Journey & Sailing the Forgotten.
Kevin Bluemel began playing piano at a young age and later began composing music in a distinctly original style, best described as classic piano and electronic instrumental music reminiscent to artist like Vangelis, Yanni and Hans Zimmer. Quality songs from Uncharted like A New Day, Vitality, Distant Serenade, Seaside & Uncharted (title song) are several favorite songs everyone will enjoy, simply by the classical melody phrasing and moving cinematic nuances.
After his first studio release, Kevin Bluemel began acquiring fans from all corners of the globe. Now with the release of Uncharted coming up next week, take a minute to discover this great artist for yourself and make Kevin Bluemel’s website and music store your next destination! Listed as new age, instrumental, contemporary piano, the 12 songs are: A New Day, Call of the Sea, Vitality, Prelude, Forest of Dreams, Distant Serenade, Seaside, Uncharted, Beyond the Horizon, Secret of the Bay, Overture & Storm Front.
Visit KevinBluemel.com to sample or purchase Uncharted and his self-titled debut release. Sample digital songs now, and after February 5, 2013 you may purchase Uncharted at Amazon.com. Photo and cover art courtesy kevinbluemel.com.
Martin Luther King Jr. & Elvis Presley Tribute Song single by country music legend Pam Tillis & Kris Thomas.
The good people at television media and internet music video company Rive Video Promotion sent me an inspiring tribute song video for our enjoyment, just in time for civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
This song video titled Two Kings is a tribute to the enduring legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and Elvis Presley, two of the most iconic figures in modern American history. This tribute song honors what both men stood for and their beliefs and dream for a better America.
The song Two Kings is performed by country music legend Pam Tillis and singing songwriter Kris Thomas. If you would like to purchase this great song single by two great artists you can find Two Kings at iTunes.
Artists, bands and record labels can find information about Rive Video production services for video airplay on stations like MTV, BET, CMT and other media at RiveVideo.com. Photo of Pam Tillis & Kris Thomas is courtesy rivevideo.com.
The celebration of Christmas, and the holiday season leading up to the special day is one of renewed excitement for most people. However you look at it, the period leading up to Christmas Day is a busy time of year. Shopping for gifts and preparing are a priority, but most important of all, Christmas is a special time to celebrate with family and friends.
On the subject of gift giving however, one of the new Christmas Albums in 2012 would make a wonderful Christmas gift this year. While I operate a completely non-profit site, many of the artists I represent are offering special discounts on all of their music in either CD or digital mp3 formats.
This time of year also marks a period in time when artists are offering sale discounts on all merchandise including DVDs, apparel, and a large variety of gift items. There are too many artists with special sale pricing, but a good place to start is the 10 artists with new Christmas Albums in 2012.
While you are at their website to sample or purchase their brand new Christmas album, many of the artists below have related merchandise so check out their selection of gift items too. Find more popular new Christmas albums at Amazon.com. Photo by – Anastasiya Zalevska.
Popular New Christmas Albums in 2012:
10 New Christmas Albums in 2012:
1. Christmas by Albedo.
2. Home for Christmas by Celtic Woman.
3. A Choral Christmas by Cusco.
4. Christmas Spirit by David Arkenstone.
5. O Christmas (Solo Piano) by Isadar.
6. Christmas Romance by Jim Brickman.
7. Embracing Winter by Jim Hudak.
8. Christmas by Kevin Kern.
9. Peace on Earth by Kitaro.
10. Candlelight Christmas by Mannheim Steamroller.
Pre-release Easy Listening Album Review for – Standing Ovation: The Greatest Songs From The Stage by Susan Boyle.
It can be said the life story of Susan Boyle is an inspiration to those who know her best, but by all accounts, Susan Boyle is an inspiration to untold millions of people worldwide. It’s as if her sudden rise to stardom after appearing on the television reality show Britain’s Got Talent was meant to be, if not a dream come true.
Now with the prominence of a top ranked seasoned professional, best-selling albums, and top of the chart success covering five continents in over twenty countries, once again she is destined to sing her way into the hearts of millions. Some may find it ironic knowing it all began with the song I Dreamed a Dream.
Susan Boyle’s three earlier albums I Dreamed A Dream, The Gift & Someone To Watch Over Me are all popular, easy listening vocal albums loved by an constantly increasing fan base that spans the globe.
Standing Ovation: The Greatest Songs From The Stage is the newest album by Susan Boyle, due to be released on November 13, 2012. Her newest release is a compilation of classic songs, and as the album subtitle suggests, are 11 favorite songs performed in the theater and some of the greatest movies ever produced.
One day prior to the release of her new album on November 13, 2012 Susan Boyle appeared on NBC’s Today Show Concert Series, and performed the Abba cover song The Winner Takes It All. If you listened to her sing live for the first time it was a beautiful introduction.
For the millions of people who know her story and have listened to the soprano sing, simply discovering the talents of Susan Boyle has been the shared moment of victory uniting us all.
The 11 songs on Standing Ovation are Somewhere Over The Rainbow, The Winner Takes It All, Send In The Clowns, The Music Of The Night featuring Michael Crawford, Bring Him Home, Memory, As Long As He Needs Me, All I Ask Of You featuring Donny Osmond, Out Here On My Own, You’ll Never Walk Alone, This Is The Moment featuring Donny Osmond.
Sample all 11 songs from Standing Ovation on the music video below. It is hard to believe but it was reported one earlier YouTube video reached viewership of almost 2.5 million hits within the first seventy two hours, which is a testament to her popularity. Read Susan Boyle’s inspiring story and sample or purchase at SusanBoyleMusic.com or find the audio CD and mp3 downloads for Standing Ovation at Amazon.com on November 13, 2012.
Patriot Day Tribute Song – War by Peter Jennison.
Patriot Day is an official federal holiday observed each year in the United States on September 11, in remembrance of the world changing events that transpired in America on September 11, 2011. Patriot Day is unlike the similarly named civic holiday Patriot’s Day, which commemorates the anniversary of the first battles of the American Revolutionary War. Patriot Day is a newer holiday in the United States, but an important one for Americans, also being a day of unity in the political sense.
Patriot Day will always be a significant day of remembrance in honor of the people who lost their lives on 9/11. This year’s Patriot Day holiday in particular arrives at another historic turning point in America’s history, and a period in time when enlisted American men and women on active duty overseas are making the return trip home, or will return home someday to be united with their families.
Peter Jennison is a U.S. Army Captain and MEDEVAC helicopter pilot making a return trip home to his family. On his Facebook page it states that weeks ago, one of America’s protectors, was reunited and spending time with friends and family after a year’s tour of duty in Iraq, Kuwait, and Afghanistan. Peter Jennison is also a great artist who earlier released a piano instrumental album relative to his war experiences as an active service member titled Longing For Home.
Peter Jennison’s song titled War from his Longing For Home album makes a great tribute song for Patriot Day. While Peter Jennison has expressed the music and title of his instrumental album was based on his own longing to serve and return home, it can be said there are millions of American family members worldwide who would convey the same message about their enlisted service member. They too are longing for their family member’s safe return home.
Visit the Facebook Page of Peter Jennison. Sample or purchase songs and the album Longing For Home at Amazon.com and other online music stores like CDBaby and iTunes. Big Stock Photo photographer credit – JustASC.
Pre-release Review: Let Mother Earth Speak by Dennis Banks & Kitaro. New spoken word album with song single included entitled Peace, available in audio CD and digital downloads.
Distinguished Native American activist Dennis Banks has teamed up with international new age superstar and GRAMMY® Award-winning Kitaro for his new album titled Let Mother Earth Speak.
This unity of Dennis Banks, who provides spoken word narrative, and Kitaro who accompanies Dennis with world-class instrumentals, is a world apart culturally speaking from the music customarily heard in modern day society.
Let Mother Earth Speak is an exclusive new release like no other in the genres of spoken word, along with traditional Native American music. Introducing 9 songs total on the album and the life history of Dennis Banks, an Anishinabe from the land of the Ojibwa people, is delivered by spoken word and traditional Native American Indian songs.
Kitaro’s instrumentals of keyboards, Native Indian Flute, percussion, and ethnic woodwinds transcend the message of peace and real life stories with a sense of inspiring realism. Artists Tomoko Koshikawa and Kirilola sing background vocals.
There is a sense of authenticity in the voice of Dennis Banks given the down to earth clarity in which he uses spoken word to encourage a more peaceful existence, while recalling past memories and wisdom learned from the experience.
Sharing oneness with the earth in which they live day to day, Dennis Banks and Kitaro each embolden the message of international peace in their own lives as individuals. Together as a team, their encouraging message speaks of peace and harmony with new-found optimism, making the elusive goal of world peace seem less abstract and more like a compellingly real concept within arm’s reach.
Domo Music Group is presenting this arrangement by Dennis Banks and Kitaro. This album will be interesting to watch since this project will be submitted for GRAMMY® consideration in the Spoken Word category in 2012 – 2013.
Receiving nomination or a GRAMMY® Award for Best Spoken Word Album will be a challenge however since past winners include 2012 Winner Betty White, plus former and current U.S. Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.
This new album composed and arranged by Dennis Banks and Kitaro, is timed to be officially released on September 11, 2012. You may sample or purchase this album right now with 18 page cover booklet containing photos and song lyrics at Domo Music Group and iTunes.
Let Mother Earth Speak has 9 songs titled as follows: Thank You Great Spirit, Song Of Responsibilities, The Missionary Song, A Good Day To Die, Don’t Cry, End Of The Day, She Don’t Love Me Anymore, Longest Walk 2 and Peace.
Visit DennisBanks.org to learn more, and to sample or purchase visit the Domo Music Group pages for Dennis Banks and the Domo Music Group pages for Kitaro. Cover artwork courtesy dennisbanks.com & kitaromusic.com.
New Age Album: Patterns of Reflection by Peter Sterling.
With beginning origins of the harp dating back to around 2500 B.C., some might believe the heavenly instrument of ancient times may have fallen out of favor in today’s modern instrumental music scene. Even by today’s standards the acoustic and electronic harp as a stringed solo and orchestral instrument is as popular as it ever was. The celestial harp, with strong religious ties throughout history is legendary for producing beautiful melodies with peaceful, uplifting harmony.
Peter Sterling is widely accepted as one of today’s best harpist in the new age music genre. For over 20 years Peter Sterling has immersed himself in attaining leading prominence as a top professional harpist, who also performs live tours in ensembles and as a premier harp soloist in the United States and countries overseas.
Founding his own Harp Magic Music recording label, Peter Sterling’s twelfth album Patterns of Reflections embraces harp and instrumental music with a pronounced celestial effect as earlier releases The Sands of Time, Harp Magic & Harp Dreams.
Releasing some of his best harp music to date, Patterns of Reflections is a beautiful instrumental album marketed like any other release, but harp music is also tied to a niche market since harp melodies are often used in weddings, memorial services, and other special occasions where relaxing music is requested and appreciated most.
Patterns of Reflection, composed and produced by Peter Sterling, is an expertly layered 16 song collection featuring a contemporary array of peaceful and uplifting harmonies by way of a celestial stringed instrument born centuries ago.
Performing on a contemporary electronic acoustic harp, Peter Sterling and a talented group of artists employ a modern day technique that portray harp and instrumental music with vision and above all, divine inspiration.
Visit HarpMagic.com and buy songs and albums at the Harp Magic music store. Photos are courtesy harpmagic.com.
Race To The End by Jon Anderson, with Christophe Lebled. Tribute Song to Olympic themed Chariots of Fire by Vangelis.
Even with the London 2012 Olympic Games moving full speed ahead, official Olympic music scores for the ceremonial events appear to have taken on a life of their own. First by the record breaking interest given to artists producing Olympic songs with official ties to the London Games, and secondly a number of equally exciting tribute albums and songs produced by various artists.
Original YES vocalist and lyricist Jon Anderson of the United States, and artist Christophe Lebled from France, have produced a wonderful Olympic tribute song of the famous Vangelis composition Chariots of Fire. Jon’s new mp3 single shown in the song video below is aptly titled Race To The End.
Jon Anderson as you may know has performed live concerts with Vangelis for years, and together they have produced a number of great singles and albums as the team (Jon & Vangelis). The albums Short Stories, The Friends of Mr. Cairo, Private Collection & Page of Life, are highly regarded classic albums. Two of the most popular Jon & Vangelis singles/songs with an inspiring theme are I’ll Find My Way Home & State of Independence.
Christophe Lebled has in turn has worked with Jon Anderson a number of times over the years, more recently providing instrumentals for Jon Anderson’s prized concept album Survival & Other Stories. Christophe Lebled is again working with Jon Anderson in 2012. Their newest project is the Olias of Sunhillow – Live in 2012 sequel titled Zamran. This newest project is a re-creation of Jon Anderson’s original Olias of Sunhillow, which was Anderson’s first solo album.
Race To The End by Jon Anderson, with Christophe Lebled is a brilliant new song revision on Vangelis’s original composition Chariots of Fire. You can sample the new Race To The End single yourself, but I thought the lyrics and vocals by Anderson, and the keyboard soundscapes by Lebled is a fine song version of Chariots of Fire, itself with an inspiring theme song of the Olympics Games.
Jon Anderson is due to perform in the UK during the Earth and Peace Concert at the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London, England. Jon Anderson’s concert performance is going to be at Sadler’s Wells Theater in London on August 8, 2012.
People attending this special concert event at Sadler’s Wells Theater will hear Jon Anderson and the Slovakian Chamber Orchestra perform favorite song classics from YES, Jon & Vangelis songs, plus new songs specific to the Earth and Peace Concert, timed with the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Ticket information for the Sadler’s Wells Concert will be posted when available at JonAnderson.com. Currently the former front-man of YES is also scheduled to perform live concerts in Uruguay and Brazil this September.
Christophe Lebled himself has produced an entire album to compliment the orchestral works of Vangelis. The release from 2011 titled Tribute to Vangelis has 11 songs total, and is comprised of a variety of Vangelis soundtrack songs including Antarctica, The Bounty – Closing Theme, Pinta Nina Santa-Maria, Pulstar & Abraham’s Theme from Chariots of Fire.
Tribute to Vangelis by Christophe Lebled is an admirable tribute album to the Greek composer. In every respect, Christophe Lebled’s Tribute to Vangelis release is unequaled to any other interpretations I have ever heard to date.
While keeping within the same melody and intricate harmony structures of Vangelis compositions, the sound and atmosphere is uniquely his own, which makes a masterful re-creation to compliment the graceful soundscape of composer Vangelis. Christophe Lebled not only re-creates the sound of Vangelis, but rivals the composer in effect with some areas on this fine tribute release.
Jon Anderson and Christophe Lebled each have their own original albums to check out, in addition to their new tribute single for Vangelis’s Chariots of Fire. Below is the Race To The End song video. Check back for Anderson’s new album Zamran, featuring Christophe Lebled later in 2012.
Vangelis – Official Music for 2012 London Olympics.
With the start of the 2012 London Summer Olympic Games set to begin on July 27, 2012, it seems fans of the Greek composer Vangelis have clearly scored an early victory by way of an official Olympic music news release about a famous instrumental soundtrack score composed by Vangelis.
The song Chariots of Fire was earlier reported to be the official 2012 Olympic music for the athletic games opening ceremonies, and now Kate Mansey, a journalist for London newspaper The Sunday Times, reported on another new development regarding Vangelis. Her source of press information for the latest news announcement was direct from the producer of the victory award ceremonies Nicci Hallifax.
The song Chariots of Fire by Vangelis is now confirmed to be the official 2012 Olympics theme music to be played during every medal awards ceremony for the duration of the historic athletic events. In addition to the medal award ceremonies, the song was played during the opening events and will be performed during relay of the Olympic Flame.
The London Philharmonic Orchestra has reproduced 5 new recordings or remixes of the original Vangelis composition Chariots of Fire, which won Vangelis an Academy Award for Best Original Music Score. The Academy Award-winning Chariots of Fire movie is based on the inspiring story of two British athletes competing together at the 1924 Summer Olympic Games in Paris, France.
Chariots of Fire (On Stage) by Vangelis, is a brand new Olympic themed theatrical movie soundtrack score released days ago on July 23, 2012. The theatrical play soundtrack has 11 songs of new orchestral music by Vangelis, used for the theater stage adaptation of the Academy Award-winning Chariots of Fire movie. The play adaptation showing in the UK premiered on May 9, 2012 at the Hampstead Theatre in London, England.
Available in audio CD and digital download formats, sample or purchase the original Chariots of Fire at Amazon.com and Chariots of Fire (On Stage) at Amazon.co.uk. For information about the theatrical shows, visit the London, England based website ChariotsOfFireOnStage.com. Big Stock Photo – MOKreations.
The official 2012 London Olympic music by Vangelis, having an inspiring and universal theme is clearly a winning choice. The 5 new Chariots of Fire song compositions performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra are as follows:
1. Energy Song Version – Up-tempo song remix.
2. Heritage Song Version – Down-tempo song remix.
3. Extreme Song Version – Jazzier style song remix.
4. Prime Time Song Version – Pop music song remix.
5. World Stage Song Version – Original orchestral song remix.
Memorial Day is an official federal holiday, in remembrance of Americans who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. The military branches of the U.S.A.F. are comprised of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Forces and the Coast Guard.
Craig Karolus is an independent new age artist whose music I reviewed recently, but Craig Karolus also served in the U.S. Armed Forces for eight years of duty as a medic in the U.S. Army. One day prior to today’s Memorial Day Holiday 2012, he posted a song tribute in remembrance to U.S. veterans.
Honoring American men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice, here is a new YouTube song video titled Veterans. The music video of Veterans consists of formal ceremonial footage at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia.
With a backdrop of soldiers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and Arlington National Cemetery, the song Veterans begins with trumpet and percussion, before a crescendo to complete orchestra sound, until the closing refrain. The tribute music video Veterans couldn’t be more appropriate. Likewise we salute all United States service members at home and abroad.
Craig Karolus has released two albums. The first is titled Standing On Top and his newest album in 2012 is Family Values. Visit CraigKarolus.com and Craig’s YouTube channel. Photo and video courtesy craigkarolus.com.
Music Review: Collection of Americana Songs.
With the Memorial Day weekend nearing, Americans across the United States will be honoring service men and women who have given their lives while serving their country. Memorial Day is likewise a holiday weekend when people travel across America, and experience the cultural diversity that is present in each of the 50 united states.
Composing pianist Joey Curtin has produced a tribute album about the American experience entitled Soundtrack for America. The release is a wonderful collection of Americana music where she, co-producer Marc Cooper, and guest artists portray the diverse culture we share as Americans musically. Joey Curtin is a great musician as is Marc Cooper, president of Coop Deville Records, and musician who has performed with Steve Howe, Joe Walsh, Jan Ackerman, and other popular artists.
Soundtrack for America, first released in 2008, is a unique album with a diverse portion of music influences which has been featured on Public Radio and Folk Music stations across America and a number of countries. Soundtrack for America is also a music recording recently inducted into the Dolph Brisco History collection in Austin, Texas.
Soundtrack for America is a collection of 13 Americana songs arranged to tell a story by varying music styles, beginning with my favorite melody, The Immigrant Song. The first piano and instrumental song is beautifully performed, and contains elements of cinematic music. You will find Native American music influences present in the song Wampanoag, before traversing a Jazz influence in Swing Low Sweet Chariot.
There are enjoyable versions of the hymns God Bless America, Amazing Grace, and the thunderous Battle Hymn Of The Republic. Although the album was produced several years ago, Soundtrack for America is a wonderful song collection highlighting the cultural diversity of music, people, and places in America.
Joey Curtin’s most current solo piano album entitled Going to California is an excellent cover arrangement of solo piano music by legendary artists like Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Coldplay, Bob Dylan, Steve Winwood and The Who.
New Music Review: Family Values by Craig Karolus.
Craig Karolus is an independent new age artist who has released a new 2012 album that is sensible in style and manner, in every way.
In an uneasy world where a moment of collective unity and reasoning is needed now more than ever, Craig Karolus has not only made an expertly designed approach in the audible sense, but in grace and perception with why he produced his album entitled Family Values.
After visiting his official website, I could tell Craig Karolus shares many of the same values as you or I, and is a lot like the majority of us by the attention and importance given to friends and family.
Family Values is in fact a tribute album dedicated to celebrate the lives of living family members, and to four family members who passed away between the months of January and June during 2011.
I accentuate the principles of Craig Karolus since I wanted to give everyone a chance to see his personal point of view, in addition to the significance and depth of his tribute music to family members. The 8 songs on Family Values were composed with his relative’s personalities in mind, so every song is a unique illustration of their character, wonderfully reflected in song. I hope you take a minute to read their biographies at his website to see how each person is characterized in song.
Family Values is just over forty minutes long in a style I would say is closest to instrumental new age. I haven’t seen his music listed in any top 100 radio charts, but if given more coverage by the press and radio station owners, I can picture his album making the top 10 online radio chart listings.
It is not simply good new age music. I personally found this inspiring collection of songs more along the lines of excellent new age music! Rarely have I reviewed an album where I love every song completely, but his is pretty much the case with Family Values. Craig Karolus does have a strong musical background, starting with earlier years while in a marching band, to the point when his earlier rock band named “Karolus” opened a show for the rock metal group Great White.
Craig Karolus is considered a relatively new artist in the new age music market, but I also thought Craig is one of the best new artists too, and I don’t say this lightly. Family Values is the follow up to Standing On Top from 2011, which is another fine album I believe to be of the highest quality musically as his newest 2012 release.
Standing On Top & Family Values are listed in the Christian & Gospel genres and New Age Music category at several online music stores, but his music tribute to family and friends are best described as graceful and elegant. Above all, the manner in which Craig Karolus paid homage to his family is priceless.
Visit CraigKarolus.com to find more information about one of the best new artists. You can sample or purchase mp3 music downloads when you visit Craig Karolus at iTunes and major online retailers. Photos are courtesy Karolus Productions.
Legendary musician Kitaro continues the time honored tradition of bringing his ageless instrumental classics to millions of fans worldwide. The year 2012 is after all, much like another other year in the past, where fans of popular new age music can find many selections of the best new albums and songs all from a man who goes by the name Kitaro.
The fascinating story of Kitaro is legendary. Beginning his music career over 30 years ago, Kitaro’s intriguing journey to prominence arose with the release of his first album entitled Astral Voyage back in 1978.
Crossing many milestones along the way, Kitaro is a true innovator who remains in the forefront of the music recording industry today, just as he was the vanguard in the new age music scene years ago.
Fans of Kitaro know his discography has not only increased in volume, but has increased in popularity as time goes by too. In recent years to the present, some of the best new music from Kitaro has progressed in diversity more than ever, but the admiration for his work is at all times constant. It may leave many of us wondering what motivates or inspires him.
Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai – Volume 4 from 2010 is one of his best albums in the Ku-Kai series. The 4 CD Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai album collection is inherently monumental, and in an exclusive class by itself. The motivation for Kitaro’s Ku-Kai series as many fans may know arose after the global events on the fateful day of September 11, 2001.
On 9/11 Kitaro was on a jet from Japan traveling en route to Los Angeles when the transcontinental flight was diverted to Hawaii for 5 days due to the tragedy. It was during this time of disbelief and uncertainty Kitaro envisioned the Ku-Kai series as a means of uniting the world by music embracing a universal message of peace.
Peace thru music is not a new concept on the surface, but I, like other people find his personal belief and inner conviction with producing Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai, an honorable concept of peace and unity that is profound nonetheless.
The Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai series is an earthly travel that transports the listener to 88 sacred temples located on Shikoku Island in Japan. The music is a serene journey in its own right. The true to life excursion made over 1100 years ago on Shikoku Island in Japan endures to this day.
The music in Kitaro’s modern day journey has an itinerary of refined harmony made for reflection. Every instrumental song on the series is comprised of bells from one of the holy temples, integrated into the series with Kitaro’s internal vision of peaceful harmony in music and in life shown externally. It may be why many consider Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai series the best new albums by Kitaro.
Nearly every day I describe an artist’s album and its qualities, but rarely do I focus or reveal the intrinsic motivation of an artist’s instrumental creation. Ku-Kai series Vol. 1, Vol. 2, Vol. 3 & Vol. 4 earned Kitaro a GRAMMY® Nomination in the Best New Age Album category, which basically speaks for itself. The admiration for Kitaro and his music that unites the world is, of all things, real and constant.
Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai - Vol. 4 has 8 songs titled; Lotus Mountain, Yakushi, Magic Seeds, Reflection Of Water, South Wind, Circle Pray, Requiem & Ritual Winds. I have the privilege of interviewing Kitaro in the near future. During our interview I hope to reveal the central element that inspires one of the top instrumental music producers today.
Visit the Domo Music Group Kitaro pages to sample or purchase Kitaro’s music, and then visit DomoMusicGroup.com. Read Kitaro’s Ku-Kai page at Domo Music Group for more about this special series. Photos courtesy domomusicgroup.com.
Jon Anderson has a new Christmas song called Give Hope available as an MP3 download, just in time to begin the holiday season in style. Speaking of style, if you look at the photo you will see a trendy songbird on the album cover wearing a red scarf. It is a photo illustration, but this bird is one of the most fashionable Robins ever!
Give Hope is a new revision of Jon Anderson’s 3 Ships (22nd Anniversary Edition). I couldn’t find very much information on his new song release but there are plenty of locations where you can sample Jon Anderson’s Give Hope. It features Jon naturally, along with a children’s choir which really adds to the festive atmosphere.
This song is a special Christmas wish from Jon Anderson!
Album cover photo illustration courtesy jonanderson.com.
AOMusic has a beautiful World Fusion music release after their up-and-coming albums Twirl & Grow Wild which share the identical trait of being lively, world-beat music rhythms you are sure to love. To me, what makes AOMusic special, aside from the beautiful melodies, are the central performers themselves knowing every artist is a veteran music professional.
AOMusic’s new release is enthusiastically titled – and Love Rages On! If the colorful album cover and title doesn’t immediately catch your attention, the 9 brilliant songs that integrate World Fusion music with inspiring children’s choir will. Already familiar with AOMusic, I am excited to tell you all about this special group!
Richard Gannaway, Jay Oliver, and Miriam Stockly are the leading artists in AOMusic. Between the three artist’s careers, they have worked with popular music celebrities like; Sheryl Crow, The Eagles, Joe Walsh, Queen, Freddie Mercury, George Michael, Chaka Khan, Jimmy Buffett, Celine Dion, Bonnie Raitt, Tina Turner, David Arkenstone and Mike Oldfield. Believe it or not this all-star music celebrity lineup is a partial list, but it gives you a pretty good idea about the high level of quality these artists are recognized for. And there is much more!
AOMusic shares a genuine message of unity with – and Love Rages On! – It is on this release where ethnic harmonies of children’s choirs from four continents are united with superb world music rhythms and contemporary instrumentals.
Founding artist Richard Gannaway also sings vocals and plays stringed instruments. Jay Oliver performs keyboards and synthesizers. Miriam Stockley, who is a key member, sings vocals on this release after joining Richard Gannaway and Jay Oliver during the time of their second album Grow Wild which went Top 5 on Zone Music Reporter’s Top 100 airplay chart.
And Love Rages On! – is a colorful and vibrant album that will make your heart soar! AO Music takes intricate World Music rhythms and beautiful choir music to the highest level. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if AOMusic – and Love Rages On! – is the recipient of one or more “Best Album of the Year Awards for 2011” when review publicists and music sites announce their best album awards at the beginning of 2012.
You will recognize the beauty of this release even more if you are familiar with lead vocalist Miriam Stockley, who makes a grand impression on Adiemus releases. Miriam Stockley ascertains herself an amazing talent with AO Music. Other essential members in – and Love Rages On! - are Sandeep Chowta who plays Indian flute tracks, and regular contributing artists Andy Georges (strings), George Bernardo (percussion), and Doug Lunn (bass guitar).
AOMusic and its central performers contribute more than a slogan of international unity in their music, having been involved with the projects AOMUSIC 4 HAITI campaign, the global benefit Project Peace On Earth, and the Beijing Olympic Committee by composing the theme music for the 2008 Summer Olympiad.
And Love Rages On! – Genuinely support their values while beautifully communicating their “One People, One World” perspective of solidarity, which couldn’t be more appropriate given the current social issues experienced worldwide. In terms of the unifying harmonies you will hear on their release, I believe you will find enough inspiration to go around it will make the whole world sing!
The children and boys choirs featured on this release are; CRC Children’s Choir (Beijing, P.R.C.), Martve Boys’ Choir (Tbilisi, Peoples Republic of Georgia), Bishop Bavin St. George’s Children’s Choir (Johannesburg, South Africa), Bishop Bavin St. George’s Children’s Choir (Johannesburg, South Africa), Chorus of Light (Orlando, FL), and Rainbow Mountain Children’s School (Asheville, NC).
Our Last First Time by Sue Brescia.
Sue Brescia, a New Age, Adult Contemporary singer, songwriter, and composing musician from Middletown, Rhode Island, recently released her second CD, Our Last First Time. By composing her original arrangements with simplicity, beauty and breadth, the 16 music compositions, title song and animated video are like a music symphony dedicated to the love shared between two people, even beyond the life experience of sorrow and loss.
The contemporary instrumentals in Our Last First Time are appropriately named after each line of every verse from the title song to encompass the full spectrum of the CD, which articulately capture emotions ranging from lightheartedness to an introspective tranquility. It is through the masterful blending of piano, woodwinds and strings that the heartfelt quality of her arrangements are conveyed.
Sue Brescia began her career as a singer in a top 40 band at age 18, while also performing in various cabarets and theaters in New England. After several years in Summer Stock Theater, a cabaret performance for the Royal Family, and an appearance at New York’s Catch A Rising Star, Sue Brescia began writing songs and produced her first CD release, Hope Rising in 2007. It was from this CD release that her song Forget You Never was listed among the International Top 40 according to the International Association of Independent Recording Artists.
The song Passage of Time from her Hope Rising CD, was another achievement for her after having been selected from more than 350,000 artists worldwide to appear with Natalie Merchant, Carly Simon and Livingston Taylor in contributing to the Life in the Years, and More Life in the Years CDs, a compilation of music to benefit the Alzheimer’s Association.
Our Last First Time comprises the collection of Sue’s life experiences and mortality’s reasoning which has sculpted her into the artist she is today. It is where her fervency for music originates. Writing lyrics to a song, composing an arrangement, all come from the core of her being, from a spiritual place. Sue’s album was also selected among the top entries and runner up status in the December 2010 round during the Song of the Year song and lyric competition.
If you have ever heard the facts about our universe that there are over 1 billion galaxies other than our own, and there are more stars in the sky than grains of sand on every shore, then you know these truths about our universe make the interstellar space above us seem infinite and hard to envision.
Fred Thrane from Sandpoint Idaho has incorporated those fact based linear notes on the inside CD cover of his debut album Angels of the Sun, but in a related topic much closer to home and easier to picture is the like a grain of sand approach in which he composed and launched his first instrumental album. Presenting his exclusive talents on CD for his first official introduction, Angels of the Sun yields an expansive diversity in what you would expect to hear on a debut album, so it is a release that can be appreciated by a variety of people.
Angels of the Sun features diverse styles ranging from New Age, Flamenco and Contemporary, which likewise ascertain his aptitude as an accomplished guitarist of various styles. Relying on his strong background as both a student and music educator, I thought Fred Thrane has released a wonderful first album. Everything began when he picked up the guitar for the first time during his teen years studying Classical and Flamenco guitar.
The next phase of his education was Classical Guitar instruction during college years at UC Santa Barbra. Fred later transferred to Cal State Hayward, where he majored in guitar and earned a master’s degree in music, with a specialty in Classical Guitar. For the next 5 years he took lessons from distinguished guitarist Rey de la Torre. Fred Thrane then reached a turning point when he began his teaching career as Professor of Music at San Jose State University and Foothill College while educating students in Classical Guitar. It was during this time period he had composed some of the melodies for this release.
Angels of the Sun features 9 engaging songs, and brings with it the foresight and experience of a music professional that has devoted much of his life acquiring the skills needed to produce an album which is singular in its existence yet further reaching in its appeal among many.
Dennis Murphy and Jim Norris are two performers who provide accompaniment on this release. While Denis plays bass and Jim contributes the variety of percussion parts, both complement the nucleus of Fred’s composition by magnifying his melodic theme, and then adding a good measure of vibrant harmony of their own.
The more extravagant Flamenco styled songs Big Sur, Fandango in Four, Farruca & Moraga Raga were my favorites. Like most songs on this instrumental album, you will find they are quite lively and up-tempo with great percussion enhancements which are in harmony with the energetic atmosphere one would expect to hear on Flamenco music. The Title Song, Dawn Dancer & The Third Heaven are more serene in tempo and rhythm, but they too are engaging and consistent in theme.
Finding a forte in blending New Age, Flamenco and Classical styles into a single orchestration, Fred Thrane is a music professional who shines on his first release by his diverse experience as a guitarist. More than capable of arranging a select number of music influences into a single improvisation of wonder, I can see where Angels of the Sun will please a wide variety of musical tastes. In the end, this makes his first release seem more like a universal commodity.
Hubble Telescope cover image courtesy NASA, B.D. Moore and J.J. Hester.
Picture yourself as a singer on stage in front of a large crowd of people with all eyes upon you. Now, even if you are well accustomed to performing on stage, and are within your comfort zone in front of an audience and do well, keeping audiences entertained year after year is of course a completely different story. To survive and remain a long-term success, everything is dependent on your abilities as a vocalist and the quality of the lyrical message you wish to deliver.
Jon Anderson, former lead vocalist and lyrical messenger for the group Yes, is while I write this review, standing on a stage entertaining audiences during tour venues in the United States, Canada, and Mexico, which is in support of his concept album – Survival & Other Stories. What I find most impressive about Jon Anderson is the fact he has been not only capturing, but keeping a firm grip on audiences with his music for the past 5 decades, and so it goes without saying that Jon Anderson is a wonderfully gifted vocalist with a exciting message people truly want to hear over and over again.
It was during my recent 2011 interview with Jon Anderson where he specified that while on stage, concert goers would hear original Yes songs, along with Jon & Vangelis songs. In addition he articulates the biographical aspects about his life to an audience, what the songs mean and how they were created, along with singing songs from his newest release – Survival & Other Stories. Jon also acknowledged the importance his fans are to him, which are of course the lifeblood for any artist.
Jon Anderson is a music superstar, even to those other than his most loyal fans who regard him as one of the greatest music icons past and present. While true he is best known as the former lead singer and key lyricist of the Progressive Rock band Yes, his prolific solo music career continues to be as positive and significant today as it was years ago, when people like myself were buying his vinyl records!
Jon Anderson’s influence and starring role in music over five decades is legendary, and one can say Jon’s divine voice and lyrical message is clearly unforgettable. Presently, it is estimated over 38 million records were sold during his years as the dynamic lead vocalist with Yes, and his successful solo career to date. Even today people are discovering the earlier works from Yes, in addition to his numerous collaborations with other top artists, and personalized solo projects.
Survival & Other Stories is a concept album Jon created after he nearly perished from a serious illness. The silver lining began after his recovery when this unique project began to take shape. During this time period, Jon published a message on his website inviting artists to submit their music for this new endeavor.
When musicians from all corners of the world turned in their ethnic music over the internet the substance of something beautiful was born. Jon then mixed, composed, and co-produced with wife Jane Anderson the first of three concept albums, Survival & Other Stories which has a collection of 11 songs with wonderful orchestrations unified with Jon’s heartfelt vocal energies clearly articulated both musically and lyrically as optimistic and positive.
The first song New New World which opens with bold drum cadence, snare taps, and dancing strings makes a clear distinction this release is like no other yet his lyrical propensity and alto tenor range vocals reassure the listener this release will be just as impressive as the melodies he released decades ago. Unbroken Sprit is a moving piece with a light percussion backed melody, while Love Of The Life & Big Buddha Song touch upon politics and religion with spirited instrumentals backing verses of inspiration.
The blend of harmonic ethnicities continues in the moderately arranged melodies Understanding Truth, Effortlessly, Love And Understanding & Sharpening The Sword. All songs are identifiable in a sense by vocal recognition, yet each has a varying metrical rhythm and unique melody which gives every song a singular timbre and atmosphere. Gentle introspective moments are prevalent qualities in the more serene songs Incoming, Just One Man & Cloudz.
Jon Anderson without a doubt has a wonderful story to share, and in the auditory sense, his new release has a personalized point of view that comes across as musical magic. And while many artists have abandoned their music careers or quietly faded away by stepping off and never returning to the stage, Jon Anderson has clearly reached the expert level while entertaining his audiences onstage and in the studio. As it turns out, 2011 now appears to be an exciting year for everyone.
On the 10 page CD cover booklet are all song lyrics and a memoir style narrative from Jon. The global musicians listed on specific songs are; Jamie Dunlap, Peter Kiel, Jann Castor, Dan Spollen, Kevin Shima, Stefan Poddell, Steve Layton, Jeremy Cubert, Christophe Lebled, Ryan Fraley, Daniel Reinker, and Paul Quinn.
Visit jonanderson.com for music news and concert info. Survival & Other Stories can be pre-ordered from Gonzo Multimedia and Amazon.com prior to June 6 release date. Read our 2011 interview article on our pages dedicated to Jon Anderson.
Concert photo courtesy jonanderson.com. Big Stock Photo – dws.
When you hear New Age Contemporary Instrumental music having great rhythms and a wonderful upbeat atmosphere expertly blended with beautiful electronic melodies, this may be a promising sign you are listening to one of many quality songs produced by Davol!
Davol has just released Good Sign which decisively aligns itself to symbolize my description above and become an encouraging assertion to those in the music world already familiar with his first name artist title they are indeed listening to someone known for producing top quality music.
Successful in many aspects of his life, after obtaining a Ph.D. in 1989 his earlier career as a medical researcher and microbiologist were judiciously shelved in 1996 when he began a commercial venture producing multimedia music. During the same year his debut Mystic Waters became another personal success and made it to # 15 on the Billboard New Age Chart, where it remained a lengthy 25 weeks.
The decision to pursue a full time music career was fantastic news to those who already knew of his premium quality melodies, plus the worldwide usage of his songs involving television, radio, video and numerous multimedia production scores has clearly magnified this proficient artisan to many more.
Good Sign is an album that upon closer examination is rapidly multiplying in popularity and already making waves with his fans since the April 2010 release date. ZMR has set at # 3 for the month of April, so another positive finding for the very latest from Davol. The 4 additional albums A Day Like No Other, Open Book, Paradox & Nature Of The Beast are all relatives to his current yet each one is a natural variation that evolves into their individual class, each interrelated by a characteristic source of fascinating drama.
Davol has exceeded his artistic intentions with Good Sign and the early reactions granted to Davol’s progressive album does replicate the characteristic source of fascination one will find in his entire discography. Good Sign is symmetrical to Davol’s principal expression of innovative quality music nicely accented with inspiring drama.
Scarborough Days is the first song of 8 tracks that gives you a clear indication of the momentum and direction of this definitive album, along with the resulting positive influences his entire discography symbolizes. This lively song highlights the optimistic upbeat feel and beautiful keyboard synthesizer melodies those who collect his albums know so well and treasure.
Good Sign ( Title Song ) is more moderate by a light ambient feel that will brush a dark cloudy day away for anyone and promptly replace it with a bright sunshiny day full of color simply by the rich interwoven keyboard melody.
Truth 2010 is an electronic Dance / Club influences remix featured during the popular online video now available on this album. A heavier percussion tempo prepares the groove rhythms before exploration into deeper shades of electronic intensity and is very much in time when comparing to his conceptual Truth Video which captures the superficial and unbalanced influences often portrayed in television media.
Nautikos is another favorite by displaying a natural sophistication and contemporary elegance given the positively upbeat keyboard melody blending notes to perfection. This song steadily integrates harmonic spectrums in sound while harboring the glowing standard of inspiration Davol can readily achieve, making this album and his entire music collection an exceptional find for anyone.
Those familiar with his captivating music have another reason to celebrate. Newcomers can experience this sweeping source of fascination for themselves and learn why everyone is so excited about this promising new discovery by Davol.
Some of the artists I write about find inspiration by discovering the scenic wonders here on Earth. Natural compositions with peaceful and majestic music themes from an individual and local perspective can indeed be very inspirational.
Ontario Canada is the geographical location of a New Age artist who brings a beautiful listening experience to a worldwide audience. Showing a fine music observation of the abundant natural beauty that surrounds everyone each day, here is a nice album where time was given and attention was paid while orchestrating their scenic recollections.
Bruce Mitchell is a composing musician blessed with a natural talent for bringing out the best of what mother Earth has to offer with the just released New Earth Goddess album on the Millennium Label. His music compositions have a great distinction of being the feature TV soundtracks for Nature Watch & The Global Family in Japan’s multiple language International Public Broadcast program (NHK) becoming a prime time success in Europe, among other countries.
Bruce Mitchell first began with earlier albums Hidden Pathways, Dancing on the Edge, and The Gathering, relying on rich orchestra movements to translate his natural music abilities. Celtic Destiny & Celtic Sanctity are also consistent with his prior work and shown with just a touch of Celtic influence and now leads to his current release.
New Earth Goddess is an album with 10 song exploration into the hearts and minds of ten charitable goddesses who provide a (song subtitle) depicting the gift endowment held within each individual song. Bruce once again engages his friend and world class flutist Ron Korb, who likewise solidifies the project playing concert flute, bass flute, and 2 exotic bamboo woodwinds Dizi & Bansuri, with both instruments having ancient origins.
New Earth Goddess by composer Bruce Mitchell and co-musician Ron Korb represent skillful craftsmanship in composition and piano skills of one, along with equally strong woodwind skills of another. Their performance gives a dramatic looking through the lens glimpse into the naturalistic side of music by powerful symphonic expression, choir entries, and harmony rich vocals.
Flowing song Athena grants (inner wisdom) by the brass horns that open eyes, ears, and minds to a mid tempo classic presentation of piano and flute melody backed by an orchestra landscape full of strings and winds that exhibit nature as pure scenic ambiance.
The display of lighter airy moments at times nicely build into full thunderous entries, symbolic that smaller streams do trickle into larger rivers, which then flow with increasing momentum until reaching the greater oceans.
Persephone vocalizes a moderate pace in (transformation) where changing North to South seasonal winds are recalled by moving harmonic vocals. Gentle peaceful winds are heard by flute and piano duo whispering in timely unison with the lighter vocals. Brigit implies a more noble statement in (stand for your beliefs) with deeper percussion and melodic piano passages alongside bagpipes, oboe, and woodwinds, while Aeracura opens with a much quieter beginning to (unfold & blossom) considering the melody soon orchestrates in a dramatic ascension, opening right along in time with fragrant vocals.
Damara suggests a gentler mindset for (guiding children) by lighter tone in flute melody set behind piano chords and soft xylophone runs, implying a gentler hand is always wisest when caring for the younger ones. Maeve (cycles and rhythms) in an epic way when piano and flute take on a dramatic performance with one another, creating a natural ebb and flow between the two musicians, leading to the conclusion that Bruce Mitchell and Ron Korb have succeeded by becoming a constant and enduring source of inspiration while performing their music orchestration, much like the Earth itself.
Picture copyright Bigstockphoto.com – PosterPuppy.